Green Hunt is Witch Hunt – Resist It

Green Hunt is Witch Hunt – Resist It

The politico-military offensive against Maoism constitutes a veritable war on the people of India, a multipronged assault on their basic democratic rights. The central as well as state governments are using the state-Maoist confrontation as a pretext to suppress people’s struggles on basic issues and crush all voice of protest and resistance. The Maoists too are indulging in reckless anarchist acts, alienating and antagonizing the general democratic opinion and making it easier for the state to drum up support for harsh measures of repression. While boldly resisting the state’s politico-military offensive we must also clearly assert the ideological-political demarcation between the ‘Maoist’ variety of anarchism and revolutionary Marxism. Green Hunt is Witch Hunt – Resist it! Reject anarcho-militarism masquerading as Maoism! Fight for land, livelihood, liberty – fight for a people’s democratic...

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Foreword

In the name of combating the ‘Maoist menace’ (termed as the ‘gravest internal security threat’ by the Prime Minister), the UPA government has embarked on a massive combat operation. While Home Minister P Chidambaram shies away from describing the operation in terms of an outright war and has even deemed ‘Green Hunt’ to be a media myth, and while on record the Prime Minister has ruled out the possibility of deployment of the Army in the operation, it is clear that a definite operation is underway – the scale and framework of which indicate nothing short of an all-out military offensive. The Home Ministry talks of waging simultaneous operation on eleven theatres covering over 2000 police station areas in 223 districts, and the Defence Minister and Air Chief Marshal talk of deploying IAF’s special force Garuda with powers to fire in ‘self-defence’. A special central force called COBRA (Commando Battalion for Resolute Action) has already been raised and pressed into service. Chidambaram has also spoken of ‘amending’ the draconian AFSPA (presently deployed in Kashmir and the North East) in order to make it applicable in the whole of India. In tandem with this military offensive, a full-scale propaganda war is also underway. Influential sections of the print and electronic media are working overtime to manufacture a ‘national consensus’ in favour of the military offensive. With the concerned state governments...

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Operation ‘Green Hunt’: UPA Government’s War on Democracy

Operation Green Hunt (OGH) is the most conspicuous part of the Indian state’s ongoing war on “left wing extremism”, a top-priority project with a pronounced military thrust, a diversionary ‘development’ discourse and, of course, a well-orchestrated propaganda backup. It is intimately connected, politically, with the US-sponsored national-international “war on terror” and economically, with the neoliberal programme of the imperialist-corporate plunder of our natural and human resources. Political Economy of Operation Green Hunt The original and central arena of OGH is the forested regions spread over the states of Chhattisgarh, Orissa, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh. These are extremely rich in mineral and forest resources – bauxite, iron ore, uranium, limestone, marble, dolomite, tin, graphite, coal, copper, gold, diamonds, corundum, beryl, alexandrite and fluorite, as well as teak, hardwood, bamboo, abundant water resources, wildlife and fish. The bauxite deposits alone have been estimated to be worth between US$2-4 trillion. Big mining companies and steel manufacturers like the Mittals, Jindals, Tata, Essar, Posco, Rio Tinto, BHP Billiton and Vedanta signed up MoUs with respective state governments to plunder these resources. But these regions are also home to some of the oldest communities of India, whose land the corporates are preparing to grab, notwith-standing the fifth schedule of the constitution (which forbids the alienation of tribal land) and PESA (Panchayat Extension to Scheduled Areas) Act, 1996 (which empowers tribal panchayats with...

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CPI(Maoist): a Marxist-Leninist Assessment

Commentators have romanticised, deified and demonised ‘Maoism’ in many superficial ways; the point however is to appropriately assess this important trend and develop a correct political approach to it. The Indian State’s and the ruling class’ attempts to demonise Maoists as ‘terrorists’ must certainly be vigorously resisted by the revolutionary left as well as by democratic opinion. It must also be recognised that among Maoist ranks there are undoubtedly many committed and courageous activists, including those who have developed from among adivasi people, who have risked lives to work in remote and neglected areas. The debate we seek to take forward is not over the character or commitment of Maoist ranks; rather it is over the assessment of Maoist strategy, tactics and practice in the context of the Indian revolution as well as current political challenges. Strategy and Tactics Messed Up To begin with, let us hear what Maoists themselves have to say about their strategy and tactics. According to the document Strategy and Tactics, “In the concrete conditions of semi-colonial, semi-feudal India where bourgeois democratic revolution too has not been completed and uneven social, economic and political conditions exist, the objective conditions permit the proletarian party to initiate and sustain armed struggle in the vast countryside. “… No peaceful period of preparation for revolution is required in India, unlike in the capitalist countries where the bourgeois democratic revolutions...

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Genealogy of ‘Maoism’ in India

As we have just seen, the historic conflict and overlap between anarchism and revolutionary Marxism – or more generally between petty bourgeois and proletarian revolutionism – took different shapes in different countries. In our country anti-British terrorist/anarchist trends, like those against Tsarist autocracy in Russia, were in existence well before the foundation of the Communist Party of India. Later most of these forces joined the CPI. Following a short spell of left adventurism under BT Ranadive (1948-50) and then a few years of centrist ambivalence, the party adopted a right opportunist line of parliamentary cretinism. Rebellion against this led to the formation of the CPI(M) in 1964. In the wake of the Naxalbari uprising (May 1967), revolutionaries came out in numerous groups all over the country and joined forces first in the AICCCR (May 1968) and then the CPI(ML) (April 1969). The only major group that stood apart from both was the Dakshin Desh group (so named after a Bengali magazine published by it), which became the Maoist Communist Centre in October 1969. Gradually – and after the set-back of early 1970s increasingly rapidly – it abandoned mass peasant struggles for squad activities mainly in forest and mountainous regions even as they spread beyond West Bengal. Later on certain like-minded groups joined them, such as the Punjab-based Revolutionary Communist Party and the “Second CC” in 2003, leading to the...

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Experiences of Engaging with the Maoists

Our assessment of the CPI (Maoist) is based not just on a macro level theoretical study; it is informed by decades of practical experience of engagement with them since the MCC-PU-PWG days. Here are some glimpses. Isolation and Decline of Semi-Anarchism in Bihar In the course of the rise and spread of our movement and organization in Bihar, we have historically had to face hostilities from different quarters – the feudal forces, the state as well as the ‘Maoists’. In the Magadh region of central Bihar (especially in the districts of Patna, Jahanabad-Arwal, Gaya and Aurangabad), where the predecessors of today’s Maoists too had pockets of operation and influence, we had to withstand a spate of attacks and killings unleashed by both the MCC and the Party Unity group. Till date we have lost no less than 224 comrades including our supporters, activists and leaders in these attacks. In Jahanabad-Arwal alone, 127 comrades have lost their lives, at least 70 in Patna, 17 in Gaya, and 7 in Aurangabad. The attacks and killings did stop for a while after 2005, but of late we have again lost 3 comrades in East Champaran and most recently a long-standing comrade and member of Party’s Barachatti block committee, Comrade Arjun Patel Yadav was gunned down by Maoists in Gaya district. In Jahanabad-Arwal, COC (Party Unity) killed 66, MCC 21 and PWG 40...

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